We hate when we read travel websites that do nothing but rave about how wonderful every destination is. It’s misleading. We want to be honest about our experiences, and we honestly don’t recommend families visit Macau. It is a nice enough place, super new and super clean, and one of the only places in China you can gamble. Unlike Las Vegas, however, it just doesn’t have the same energy and things to do with kids. Unless you want to visit to gamble and play games in the casinos, which are nice and super expensive (more expensive than Las Vegas!), it’s just not on our list of cities to visit with kids.
This is EXCLUSIVE content from our book, How To Travel With Kids (Without Losing Your Mind)
After traveling the world as a family of three for 9 months straight, we had to cover three daily meals and snacks, all on the road. Eating out can get pretty costly, and it can be difficult to stay on budget, especially when visiting different countries. We found ways to keep our food costs in check, that you can use for a vacation of any length.
Read any of our blogs and you know we love to walk to get to know foreign cities. With a toddler, this requires a great stroller. Typical strollers can be big and bulky, which makes them difficult to manage when on the road — they have to be checked at the airport, they take up a lot of space in a trunk, a hotel room or a cruise cabin, and they are often too big to manage in crowded museums and attractions.
This is why a good travel stroller is necessary when taking a long trip, particularly umbrella strollers that are lightweight, compact and fold easily. The following collection of travel strollers are low in weight and can travel well. Better yet, these strollers have high marks from parents who actually used them on trips.
Once upon a time, you used to travel together. Romantic
weekend getaways, relaxing summer vacations. Then you started a family, and
ran out of time to do absolutely nothing. “One day, when the kids are older,”
you say, thinking about when you can travel again. To that, we say, “Go now!”
We loved to travel, too, and when Aarav was born, we made the decision
to keep on traveling while he was young. He’s traveled as an infant on
long-haul flights. He’s seen 41 countries before he turned 4. While we learned
a lot about traveling with a young child (read: What We Learned
on Our Sabbatical (And What it Means for Your Vacation)), we also discovered there are perks adults get to enjoy
when traveling with young children.
We cannot rave enough about Shanghai! Actually, we rank Shanghai one of our top five cities in the world. After visiting the more traditional and old-school Beijing, Shanghai was such a change of scenery. The city is very cosmopolitan, like New York City, Mumbai or Tokyo, and incredibly organized. This is a city that wants to be the financial capital of modern Asia and that goal is pretty evident in everything they do.
With a desire to be an international business city comes people from all around the world and from all over China. This means the food in Shanghai is to die for, coming from all the regions of China, as well as around the world! We had some of the best foods we have ever eaten while here. From its beautiful harbor, the energy of the city and its people, the illuminated skyscrapers and, again, the food (we seriously cannot say enough about it), Shanghai should be on everyone’s travel list. This is a city you do not want to miss. Go, now. We mean it!
When you take a vacation, it can be easy to overindulge and put on a few pounds. Cruises are notorious for all-you-can-eat buffets and lots of fruity alcoholic drinks, with passengers gaining an average of 5 to 10 pounds during the duration of one cruise. To take a 9-month trip around the world, however, we knew we couldn’t eat our way around the globe — although we definitely wanted to sample the local foods. We made a commitment before we embarked on our journey to do it in a healthy way. We promised ourselves we wouldn’t come back from our trip in worse shape than when we left. And we didn’t!
We know it’s tough to maintain your health on the road, so we’re sharing our tips on how we stayed healthy.
The best way to get your bearings in a new city is to join a walking tour. In practically every city we traveled, we took a walking tour to learn our way around and get insights from a local. But even more than suggesting everyone take a walking tour in a new place, we suggest a free walking tour. Yes, we understand the obvious reason, but there are many more!
It’s historical, a culture all its own, and, oh yes, the food is off the charts! Beijing is where the Ming and Qing Dynasties thrived with imperial families ruling for centuries. You’ll find palaces, temples, gorgeous parks, and, of course, various entries to the Great Wall of China. Not only is Beijing’s culture unique in how the country celebrates its spiritual beliefs — they once considered themselves between Heaven and Earth — it is also the center of communism in China and provides travelers with another unique perspective on the world.
Yes, although the language can be a barrier, we also found the people of Beijing to be extremely friendly to families, going out of their way to take care of children. It really is a magical city that everyone should visit.
Note: This is the ninth and final article in our series around our travel philosophy, Be F.L.E.X.I.B.L.E. In this article, we breakdown what the 2nd E in Be F.L.E.X.I.B.L.E. stands for. If you want to first get an overview on Be F.L.E.X.I.B.L.E. itself, please click here.
We are big fans of technology. (Then again, we are both software engineers, so we may have a slight bias.) Technology begins with using tools like TripAdvisor and Google Translate to help you with your trip. Planning a trip requires some research, and there are many websites that can help you find your routes, seek out accommodations, and book your trip. When in a foreign location, having apps and resources to help you find your way, decipher a different language, or make alternative plans when weather suddenly changes is imperative.
Note: This is the eight article in our series around our travel philosophy, Be F.L.E.X.I.B.L.E. In this article, we breakdown what the 2nd L in Be F.L.E.X.I.B.L.E. stands for. If you want to first get an overview on Be F.L.E.X.I.B.L.E. itself, please click here.
As parents, we make mistakes all the time, and most of the time — if we are honest — we don’t really know what we are doing (even when we act like we do!). We are imperfect, but we continue to learn as parents.